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Bipolar Disorder

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Most individuals with bipolar disorder develop symptoms during their late teens or early adulthood. Individuals with the disorder cycle through wild mood swings. Manic behavior includes periods of exaggerated happiness, fits of intense industry, gregariousness, reckless spending. Depressive episodes include intense sadness, fugue states—wherein an individual does not recollect actions during a disturbed conscious state, excessive sleeping, lashing out and general irritability. Bipolar is unrelated to the normal emotional ups and downs most people experience. It is a serious illness with no cure. But it can be managed with medication and therapy.

Bipolar symptoms


Teens experiencing a manic episode display some or all of the following behaviors:


Teens experiencing a depressive episode display some or all of the following behaviors:

Co-occurring conditions

Individuals with bipolar disorder are at increased risk for developing a drinking or substance abuse problem. Other co-occurring conditions may include attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder—ADHD and anxiety disorders, particularly separation anxiety.


Bipolar is treatable. Therapists must find the right balance of medications in order to treat both manic and depressive episodes. Medication in combination with psychotherapy is the most effective treatment for teens with bipolar disorder.

White River Academy

White River Academy, or WRA, is a boarding school unlike any other. It is located near the rim of the majestic Great Basin in Utah. Our treatment regimen relies heavily on the natural beauty of our surroundings. WRA students receive ongoing individual and group therapy as well as class work, which is superior to the standard public school system curriculum.

We integrate the outdoors into the day-to-day treatment of our students. Hiking, horsemanship, servant-leadership within the community and exploring—these are as therapeutic as medication and the counseling we also offer. For more information about our hybrid approach to bipolar and other mood disorders, call 866-520-0905.

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We would like to thank all the wonderful staff at WRA for the great parent weekend. We enjoyed it and felt that we learned valuable insights on Positive Peer Culture and the values we must have and the importance of family commitment to each other...

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